HOLDEN CAPTIVA 7 LX
Vehicle Style: SUV
Price: $42,490 (as tested)
Fuel Economy (claimed): 11.3 l/100kms
Fuel Economy (tested): 14.5 l/100kms
The Series II Holden Captiva 7 gets an update inside and out, and appealing refreshed style.
It’s now a worthy direct competitor to Ford’s Territory and, with seven-seat capability, is a good option for anyone with more than the standard 2.3 kids to transport.
Quality: As the top of the range model, the Captiva LX is well fitted-out with leather seats, a leather steering wheel and lots of soft touch dash plastics.
The interior is free from shakes and rattles, and the shut lines - the panel gaps - in the exterior metal are uniform and tight.
Comfort: Seating is all-leather; the driver’s seat comes with eight-way adjustable electric controls. While comfortable enough, the seats lack lateral support, and lack lumbar support adjustment for the driver.
The second row seating is very comfortable, with a rear section that fits well to occupants’ backs. The third row of seating provides only limited legroom however and can realistically only accommodate children or smaller teens.
Equipment: The Captiva LX comes standard with a seven-inch touch-screen display, sat-nav, electronic compass, electrochromatic rear-view mirror, climate control, rear-view camera and park assist, eight-speaker six-disk stereo system with Bluetooth, steering wheel controls and lit vanity mirrors.
Storage: The Captiva is overflowing with storage options. Both rows of rear seats can fold down providing a flat floor and 930 litres of storage, expanding to 1585 litres if the passenger seat is also folded flat.
In addition, there is a huge glove box, a gigantic centre console tub, dash-top storage compartment, coin compartment and a sunglasses holder.
ON THE ROAD
Driveability: The Captiva’s 3.0 litre V6 SIDI engine produces 190kW and 288Nm of torque. Coupled with the six-speed automatic it provides plenty of acceleration when needed and is more than enough to keep the car at highway speeds effortlessly
Unfortunately, this power translates to a fairly high fuel consumption. This rises even more when used on city and suburban streets.
Refinement: The cabin provides excellent sound-dampening, meaning that little road or engine noise intrudes. Mechanical noise is only noticeable under acceleration.
Suspension: Unfortunately the overall refinement of the Captiva does not extend to the suspension. Whether from the 19” alloy wheels with low profile tyres or just the default suspension settings, the ride is too hard.
This reduces the body roll that you would usually notice in an SUV, but it also transmits a lot of bumps into the cabin - it’s particularly noticeable on secondary roads and broken tarmac.
Braking: With all-wheel disc brakes and a range of electronic braking assists, the Captiva provides excellent braking control.
ANCAP rating: Not tested.
Safety features: 6 airbags, ABS, Electronic Brakeforce Distribution, Active Rollover Protection.
WARRANTY AND SERVICING
Warranty: 3 years/100,000kms
Service costs: 15,000kms/12 months scheduled service
HOW IT COMPARES | VALUE FOR MONEY
Ford Territory TS RWD petrol ($46,990) - The benchmark for the sector for ride and refinement and with the added advantage of rear-wheel-drive for towing.
It’s also bigger than the Captiva, and features a nicer interior although falls short of the Captiva’s spec level. (see Territory reviews)
Kia Sorento SLi 2.2D ($46,190 ) - The diesel-only Sorento SLi has loads more torque (422Nm) than the V6 Captiva, and is much more economical. Ride is okay, if not class leading, however mod-cons like sat nav are unavailable. (see Sorento reviews)
Hyundai Santa Fe Elite 2.2D ($43,990 ) - The Santa Fe is in a similar zone to the Sorento - excellent powertrain, lots of room and a solid drive. It’s an ageing design, but good value buying. (see Santa Fe reviews)
Note: all prices are Manufacturer’s List Price and do not include dealer delivery or on-road costs.
TMR VERDICT | OVERALL
The Holden Captiva 7 LX is a reasonably brisk performer with well thought-out packaging. Appealing styled and put together, it is ideal for transporting a larger family.
We feel however that the V6 petrol model is far too thirsty for a modern SUV (something that is overcome in the diesel model).
The ride is also a little harsh for our liking, but, on smoother suburban streets, where a car like this will see most of its life, this is a minor issue.